You may have heard quite a bit of this amazing spice that has captivated our attention recently. Turmeric, a member of the ginger family, has been used for thousands of years as medicine, seasoning and coloring agent throughout India, South-East Asia and Africa.1 The spice is sourced from the rhizome of Curcuma longa L. where the majority is produced in India.1 The beautiful yellow color comes from curcumin, a major active component found to influence a long list of health issues.
Let’s dig deep, but not too deep, into what turmeric can actually do. This plant has the superpowers as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, analgesic, anticonvulsant, antimutagenic, insecticidal and antimcrobial.2 It can improve cardiovascular functioning, interfere with carcinogenesis and tumor growth, and protect tissue, including the liver and nervous system.1 Clinical trials on curcumin have shown improvements with rheumatoid arthritis, postoperative inflammation, osteoarthritis, psoriasis, and precancerous conditions.1 These are but a few of the many miracles this root can perform.
So how can you use this superpower plant in your life? Turmeric can be made into a liquid extract, tablets, capsules or essential oil to ingest or apply topically. Even the powdered root can be used externally! My personal favorite way to use turmeric is as an essential oil in a latte. I place a drop of turmeric, along with cardamom, ginger, and black pepper, in a cup of almond milk. Then add cinnamon, honey and vanilla. Whip it up in a blender and warm on the stove. What an amazing and beneficial treat to enjoy! You can also diffuse the oil or inhale the aroma directly. If there is an area of concern on the body, you can apply it directly to the skin without dilution.
Turmeric can have an amazing effect not only physically, but mentally and emotionally. For those who have blocks in their life, turmeric can be restoring. According to a wonderful book “Emotions & Essential Oils: A Reference Guide for Emotional Healing”, this oil is “a powerful antidote for those who feel paralyzed by the inherent dangers of life, or by a loss of function or freedom they once took for granted”.3
The superpowers of botanicals are quite endless so open your hearts and minds to the possibilities of what turmeric can bring to your life.
- Bone, K. and Mills, S. (2013). Principles and practice of phytotherapy. 2nd ed. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone, pp.900-922.
- Modern Essentials: The Complete Guide To The Therapeutic Use Of Essential Oils. 10th ed. Spanish Fork: AromaTools; 2018:126.
- Emotions & Essential Oils: A Reference Guide For Emotional Healing. 7th ed. Pleasant Grove: Essential Emotiokns; 2018:82-83.
Jonna graduated from the University of Bridgeport with a Master’s of Science degree in Human Nutrition, B.S. in Community Health Education from the City University of New York and Certified Holistic Health Coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. At UB, she studied clinical nutrition from a functional medicine paradigm that includes the concept of bio-individuality and personalized care. With each client, she designs an evidence-based nutrition plan that is unique and efficacious for optimal health. She has worked as a Certified Personal Trainer accredited by the National Academy of Sports Medicine and is a member of the American Nutrition Association (ANA).